in Chrome OS”
Department of CSE/I.T.
Partial fulfillment of the requirement for the CA of Operating
System “5th semester”
Saurabh Singh (11101830)
Sec:- K3102 (A-10 & A-11)
On every step there is a need of guidance and support. Therefore we would like to
thank from our heart to all of them who support us in completion of our term
paper. There is always a sense of gratitude towards those persons who helped us
directly or indirectly inspired, directed and helped us towards completion this term
We are extremely grateful and remain indebted to our guide Balwinder
Kaur for being a source of inspiration and for his constant support in the Design,
implementation and evaluation of the term paper. We are thankful to our Project In
charge for constant constructive criticism and invaluable suggestion, which
benefited us a lot while developing the Term paper on “Current features/problems
in Chrome OS”.
Last but not the least, I would like to thank my family, my parents and my
friends, for giving all the things that needed to me at the first place and supporting
me spiritually throughout my life.
Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will
initially be targeted at netbooks" and "most of the user experience takes place on
the web." That is it's "Google Chrome running within a new windowing system on
top of a Linux kernel" with the web as the platform. It runs on x86 processors (like
your standard Core 2 Duo) and ARM processors (like inside every mobile
smartphone). Underneath lies security architecture that's completely redesigned to
be virus-resistant and easy to update.
In other words, Google Chrome OS is a Linux-based operating system
designed by Google to work primarily with web applications. The user interface
takes a minimalist approach and consists almost entirely of just the Google
Chrome web browser, since the operating system is aimed at users who spend most
of their computer time on the Web, the only "native" applications on Chrome OS
are a browser, media player and file manager. This means that Chrome OS is
almost a pure web thin client OS.
Chrome OS is built upon the open source project called Chromium OS
which, unlike Chrome OS, can be compiled from the downloaded source code.
Chrome OS is the commercial version installed on specific hardware from
Google's manufacturing partners. The launch date for retail hardware featuring
Chrome OS was delayed from late 2010 to June 15, 2011, when "Chromebooks"
from Samsung, and then Acer in July.
Chrome OS's origins are unclear. Jeff Nelson, a former Google engineer, claimed
to have developed the original technology, code named "Google OS", described as
"a webapp-centric chopped-down Linux with a Chrome browser front-end". As
proof, Nelson cited a patent filed by Google in March 2009, listing Nelson as the
inventor, entitled "Network-based Operating System Across Devices". In a
discussion on Google+ in February 2013, Nelson wrote that by the end of 2007,
after a series of meetings, he and a product manager had convinced "management
to launch the Chrome OS project and assign head count". Other Google employees
disputed his claim, including Antoine Labour, who was one of the three original
engineers on the Chrome OS project. Labour wrote in the February 2013 Google+
discussion that he had never heard of Nelson, and that Nelson's work on a Linux
distribution "based on the concept of running off of a ram disk" has "pretty much
nothing to do with Chrome OS." A ZDNet article by Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols,
published in March 2013, also cast doubt on Nelson's claim, quoting an unnamed
source at Google as saying that Nelson "was not involved with the Chrome OS
project at any point of time nor was Chrome OS inspired by his work." According
to Vaughan-Nichols, Chrome OS "seems to have started with Ubuntu Linux.
On November 19, 2009, Google released Chrome OS's source code as the
Chromium OS project. As with other open source projects, developers can modify
the code from Chromium OS and build their own versions, whereas Chrome OS
code is only supported by Google and its partners and only runs on hardware
designed for the purpose. Unlike Chromium OS, Chrome OS is automatically
updated to the latest version.
At its debut, Chrome OS was viewed as a competitor to Microsoft, both directly to
Microsoft Windows and indirectly the company's word processing and spreadsheet
applications—the latter through Chrome OS's reliance on cloud computing.But
Chrome OS engineering director Matthew Papakipos argued that the two operating
systems would not fully overlap in functionality because Chrome OS is intended
for netbooks, which lack the computational power to run a resource-intensive
program like Adobe Photoshop.
We can already do most, if not all, of what Chrome OS promises to deliver.
Using a Windows 7 or Linux-based netbook, users can simply not install anything
but a web browser and connect to the vast array of Google products and other webbased services and applications. Netbooks have been successful at capturing the
low-end PC market, and they provide a web-centric computing experience today. I
am not sure why we should get excited that a year from now we'll be able to do the
same thing, but locked into doing it from the fourth-place web browser.
The file manager in Chrome OS showing a mounted Google Drive.
Early in the project, Google put online many details of Chrome OS's design goals
and direction. However, the company has not followed up with a technical
description of the completed operating system. Design of Google OS are under
1- User interface
2- New window manager and graphics engine
4- Hardware support
6- Link handling
8- Shell access
9- Release channels and updates
10- Chrome OS on Windows 8
Old Chrome-Chromium OS login screen
1- User interface
Design goals for Chrome OS's user interface included using minimal screen
space by combining applications and standard Web pages into a single tab strip,
rather than separating the two. Designers considered a reduced window
management scheme that would operate only in full-screen mode. Secondary tasks
would be handled with "panels": floating windows that dock to the bottom of the
screen for tasks like chat and music players. Split screens were also under
consideration for viewing two pieces of content side-by-side. Chrome OS would
follow the Chrome browser's practice of leveraging HTML5's offline modes,
background processing, and notifications. Designers proposed using search and
pinned tabs as a way to quickly locate and access applications .
2- New window manager and graphics engine
On April 10, 2012, a new build of Chrome OS offered a choice between the
original full-screen window interface and overlapping, re-sizable windows, such
as found on Microsoft Windows and Apple's Mac OS X. The feature was
implemented through the Ash window manager, which runs atop the Aura
hardware-accelerated graphics engine. The April 2012 upgrade also included the
ability to display smaller, overlapping browser windows, each with its own
translucent tabs, browser tabs that can be "torn" and dragged to new positions or
merged with another tab strip, and a mouse-enabled shortcut list across the
bottom of the screen. One icon on the task bar shows a list of installed apps and
bookmarks. Writing in CNET, Stephen Shankland argued that with overlapping
windows, "Google is anchoring itself into the past" as both iOS and Microsoft's
Metro interface are largely or entirely full-screen. Even so, "Chrome OS already
is different enough that it's best to preserve any familiarity that can be
In preliminary design documents for the Chromium OS open source project,
Google described a three-tier architecture: firmware, browser and window
manager, and system-level software and userland services.
The firmware contributes to fast boot time by not probing for hardware, such
as floppy disk drives, that are no longer common on computers, especially
netbooks. The firmware also contributes to security by verifying each step in
the boot process and incorporating system recovery.
System-level software includes the Linux kernel that has been patched to
improve boot performance. Userland software has been trimmed to
essentials, with management by Upstart, which can launch services in
parallel, re-spawn crashed jobs, and defer services in the interest of faster
The window manager handles user interaction with multiple client windows
much like other X window managers.
4- Hardware support
Chrome OS is initially intended for secondary devices like netbooks, not as a
user's primary PC, and will run on hardware incorporating an x86 or ARM-based
processor. While Chrome OS will support hard disk drives, Google has requested
that its hardware partners use solid-state drives "for performance and reliability
reasons" as well as the lower capacity requirements inherent in an operating system
that accesses applications and most user data on remote servers. In November 2009
Matthew Papakipos, engineering director for the Chrome OS claimed that the
Chrome OS consumes one-sixtieth as much drive space as Windows 7.
Google Cloud Print is a Google service that helps any application on any
device to print on any printer. While the cloud provides virtually any connected
device with information access, the task of "developing and maintaining print
subsystems for every combination of hardware and operating system – from
desktops to netbooks to mobile devices – simply isn't feasible."However, the cloud
service would entail installing a piece of software, called a proxy.
6- Link handling
Chrome OS was designed with the intention of having user documents and files
stored on online servers. However, both Chrome OS and the Chrome browser have
unresolved decisions regarding handling specific file types offline. For example, if
a JPEG is opened from a local storage device, should a specific Web application be
automatically opened to view it, and if so, which one? Similarly, if a user clicks on
a .doc file, which website should open: Microsoft Office Live, Gview, or a
previewing utility? The project director at that time, Matthew Papakipos, noted that
Windows developers have faced the same fundamental problem: "Quicktime is
fighting with Windows Media Player, which is fighting with Chrome." As the
number of Web applications increases, the same problem arises.
In March 2010, Google software security engineer Will Drewry discussed
Chrome OS security. Drewry described Chrome OS as a "hardened" operating
system featuring auto-updating and sandbox features that will reduce malware
exposure. He said that Chrome OS netbooks will be shipped with Trusted Platform
Module (TPM), and include both a "trusted bootpath" and a physical switch under
the battery compartment that actuates a developer mode. That mode drops some
specialized security functions but increases developer flexibility. Drewry also
emphasized that the open source nature of the operating system will contribute
greatly to its security by allowing constant developer feedback.
8- Shell access
Chrome OS includes the Chrome Shell, or "crosh", which offers minimal
functionality such as ping and SSH, but no Bash-like shell abilities. In developer
mode, a full-featured Bash shell can be opened via VT-2, and is also accessible via
the crosh command "shell".
9- Release channels and updates
Chrome OS uses the same release system as Google Chrome: there are three
distinct channels: Stable, Beta, and Developer preview (called the "Dev" channel).
The stable channel will be updated with features and fixes once they have been
thoroughly tested in the Beta channel, and the Beta channel will be updated
roughly monthly with stable and complete features from the Developer channel.
The Developer channel is where ideas get tested, and sometimes fail, and can be
very unstable at times.
10- Chrome OS on Windows 8
On Windows 8, exceptions allow the default desktop web browser to offer a
variant that can run inside its full-screen "Metro" shell and access features such as
the Share charm, without necessarily needing to be written with Windows
Runtime. Chrome's "Windows 8 mode" was previously a tablet-optimized version
of the standard Chrome interface. However, in October 2013, the mode was
changed on Dev channel to offer a variant of the Chrome OS desktop.
In April 2012, Google made the first update to Chrome OS's user interface
since the operating system had launched, introducing a hardware-accelerated
window manager called "Aura" along with a conventional taskbar. The additions
marked a departure from the operating system's original concept of a single
browser with tabs and gave Chrome OS the look and feel of a more conventional
desktop operating system. "In a way, this almost feels as if Google is admitting
defeat here", wrote Frederic Lardinois on TechCrunch.
Chrome offers the freedom to deploy modern HTML5 and cloud computing
applications without worrying about legacy browsers ability to keep up.
The user's experience with Chrome OS will basically be synonymous with
their experience on Chrome Browser. Technically speaking, Chrome OS is a
Linux-based OS, but you won't be installing Linux binaries like you might on
Ubuntu or some other Linux distribution. Any "apps" you have will be used within
the browser. Chrome OS is effectively a new version of Chrome, that you can't
leave. There are a few reasons Google's pushing this, which we'll get to in a bit.
And as you've probably guessed, it's super-light. It starts up in a matter of
seconds, and boot straight into the browser. Likewise, the Chrome browser is
apparently very, very optimized for Chrome OS, so it should be faster than we've
ever seen it.
You might be able to hack this thing onto your current machine, but you
won't just be able to install it to replace Windows, or opt for it on your next laptop,
for example. You'll have to buy hardware that Google approved, either component
by component, or in a whole package. They're already working on reference
designs. Some features of Chrome OS explain through following points.
3- Google Apps
Screen Shot of Chrome OS
Speed boosts productivity. That’s why Chrome is built to be fast in every
way — starting up from the desktop, loading web pages, and running complex,
business-critical web apps like Salesforce, QuickBooks Online, and Concur.
Chrome runs fast even on lower-end machines, which can save money by
extending the life of your current hardware.
Google Chrome for Business uses technologies like Safe Browsing and
sandboxing to help protect your organization from malicious websites, viruses,
malware and phishing attacks as your employees browse the web. And Chrome’s
cross-site scripting protection offers added security against sites that try to steal
company and employee data.
3- Google Apps
Chrome for Business makes Google Apps work better — it was designed
from the ground up to optimize products like Gmail, Google Docs and Google
Calendar. Chrome supports many features that aren’t available from other
browsers, including Offline Gmail, Docs and Calendar, as well as desktop
notifications and editing features like drag-and-drop and cut-and-paste.
Chrome for Business is easy to deploy and manage. Instead of spending time
policing browser configurations and Internet access, IT admins can customize and
deploy Chrome as business needs dictate. For example, they can enforce usage of
extensions and Google Web Store apps via group policy across their organization,
and give specific groups access to different apps by default.
Yes, you can run a business through Chrome. The Chrome Web Store offers
hundreds of extensions and applications that you can bundle with Chrome and
distribute throughout your organization. Complete HTML5 support without OS
upgrades lets employees run powerful, scalable web apps on Windows, OSX and
Deploying Chrome means not having to upgrade your OS or buy expensive
client software in order to improve performance and security. And because you
don’t have to remove your current browser to deploy Chrome throughout your
company, you can run legacy apps in Internet Explorer and let Chrome take care of
the rest. Organizations that wish to trade up to Chrome but have employees who
need access to legacy apps can also try Google Chrome Frame, an IE plugin that
handles web pages in Chrome.
Despite the evolution of Chrome OS, there are still some significant limitations.
While there are a growing number of offline apps, the OS still relies heavily on
On our PC, we do a lot of photo editing, using both the Pic Monkey Web
app or the desktop version of Photoshop Elements, depending on the individual
task. Photoshop Elements isn't available for Chrome OS and, while Pic Monkey
works, it requires Internet connectivity to run. While there is a very basic photo
editor built into Chrome OS, which supports cropping, brightness and image
rotation, we were unable to find a photo editor with additional features that worked
offline, greatly reducing our productivity were we to experience a network outage.
Additionally, simple tasks such as printing are also unavailable once the
Internet is disconnected. Despite the USB ports that grace the sides of Chrome
books, Chrome OS does not have any printer drivers, instead relying exclusively
on Cloud Print. While many users won't miss this feature, users with a spotty
Internet connection and numerous printing needs may want to look for a different
Security is also tight, as all applications are Web-based and sandboxed.
Hence, programs do not have the ability to corrupt the machine's operating system
with viruses or malware. Google also said that all firmware upgrades are free and
automatically downloaded, unlike its competitors which demand hundreds of
dollars for new OS versions.
Google pointed out that Google Chrome OS, on the other hand, is based on
the Internet browser interface which almost every PC user is familiar with. Not
only is it fast (the December preview version boots up in under 7 seconds), the
Web-based program leverages the advantages of cloud computing so that all your
data is located online and can be accessed via any computer. In fact, a Chromebased Netbook will save the last open Web page or application online such that
you can log into any portable using Google's OS and resume exactly where you left
Due to the tight integration between the operating system and the Internet,
what happens when one is cut off from the Web? Despite high Net penetration
rates worldwide, a traveler to a foreign land may not want to pay for online access,
which, in some countries, can be very expensive. A Chrome-based Netbook will
still be able to open multimedia files and play videos, but there is no built-in
application to open Word or PDF documents. The fact that Google currently has no
provisions for installing third-party software is another stumbling block.
Further concern is data security. With traffic taking place between the
Netbook and the Internet cloud, hackers can sniff out Internet packages and
intercept information between a PC and a Wi-Fi router.
Last but not least, we were told during the briefing that hardware not
based on common standards may not be compatible with Chrome OS. Peripherals
such as mouse, keyboard and thumb drives will have no problems. However,
Webcams, printers and scanners may be a no-go. Google mentioned that it has a
solution to the printing issue in the works, though it did not give a definite answer
for other devices.
As the epic operating-system battle continues between OS X and Windows,
a lesser-known contender is slowly gaining ground. Google's Chrome OS is built
on the assumption that users spend a majority of their computer time online, and
that Internet connectivity is becoming ubiquitous. Since its release in 2009,
Chrome is already on version 25, which brings with it a better Flash engine, multi
monitor support and improved Bluetooth connectivity. Can a Chrome book
successfully replace a notebook running OS X or Windows? Or does Google's
Web-based operating system still lag behind the competition?